Commission on Law & Technology

Leading Practices in Courtroom Technology

Leading Practices | Courtroom Technology

Working Group Courtroom Technology
Topic Leading Practices
Date of Publication November 20, 2013
Summary Leading Practices in Courtroom Technology.
Applicable DLRPC (Rules) 1.0

Disclaimer: The purpose of this leading practice is to provide the Delaware Bench & Bar with an understanding of an appropriate manner in which this technology may be used. There may be more appropriate uses; and the leading practice discussed might not be appropriate for a specific purpose. It is up to the individual to use well-reasoned judgment in making that decision. The Commission is not responsible for the consequences of the decision-making process.

Leading Practices

  1. Delaware lawyers should understand the benefits and drawbacks of using technology in courtroom presentations.
    1. Pros & cons of using trial technology (expense, learning curve, backup plan)
    2. Impact on intended audience (judge v. jury)
    3. Consider as supplement to "traditional" evidence (i.e. photos, diagrams)
    4. Consider need to have in format viewable by jury or factfinder (formatting)
    5. Consider need to make a complete and accurate record
  1. Delaware lawyers should consider the various technologies available and whether the selected technology can be used in the forum.
  1. Available resources in each Court.
  1. Delaware lawyers should plan ahead and communicate their intended use of trial technology to the Court in advance of the scheduled event.
  1. Consider "reserving" a technology courtroom in advance; do not spring demands on Court at the last minute
  2. Consider need for specialized court assistance (generally a trained baliff)
  3. Consider practicing a "dry run" in advance of the scheduled event to work out kinks; communicate with Court staff to find good down time.
  1. Delaware lawyers should have an understanding of the rules of procedure and the rules of evidence applicable to the trial technology being used.
  1. Rules of Procedure
  2. Rules of Evidence
  1. Delaware lawyers should have a backup plan to account for any glitches that occur with the use of technology.
  1. Ability to transition to "traditional" presentation